Aanand L Rai: Feel for Anurag, but we have to be practical
Producer Aanand L Rai defended the decision to cut three smoking-related scenes from the film Manmarziyaan, stating that their non-inclusion does not "compromise" with its genre.
His response came after director Anurag Kashyap took to Twitter and expressed displeasure over the move, indicating that he was not consulted before the decision was taken.
Earlier, co-producer Eros had implied that the decision to cut the scenes were taken by the creative producer of the film, Colour Yellow Productions which is run by Rai.
In a statement, Rai said, "These cuts were made on a call taken by Colour Yellow Team. I feel we need to understand that this controversy happened after the film has released which leaves the producers and studio extremely vulnerable (sic)." The scenes in question had upset a certain section of the Sikh community and Kashyap, who is out of the country, had on Wednesday issued a "genuine" apology to those who were hurt. Rai said if the concept of the film was "smoking, we would've taken a stand like we did for Udta Punjab"
Manmarziyaan is a love story and we believe that these cuts do not compromise with the genre it is... My heart goes out to Anurag but in the current situation, we have to be practical," he shared.
According to a censor copy, the three deleted scenes are a 29-second smoking sequence of Abhishek, a minute long scene featuring Taapsee Pannu and Abhishek entering a gurudwara and an 11-second scene where Taapsee is shown smoking.
Taapsee also took to Twitter and lashed out at the move.
"I am sure this edit will assure that no Sikh will ever Smoke and no woman will ever think about ANYONE else while getting married in a Gurudwara. THIS surely will make Waheguru proud and assures that MY religion is the purest, most righteous and peaceful ! #Proud" Taapsee tweeted.